Citizens with immigrant backgrounds lagging behind in Germany

DAILY SABAH
Istanbul
Published 17.11.2017 20:53

A report by the German Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), which conducts regular studies on ‘integration,' has found that the divergence between immigrant-born and native Germans in key areas, such as education, the labor market and income, have mostly remained unchanged since 2005.

The study on education was conducted on young adults aged 18 to 25.

Those without a high school diploma, of an immigrant background, were 10.6 percent of the sample in 2005 and 12.1 percent in 2016.

By contrast, native Germans of that age group without a high school diploma were 4 percent in 2005 and 3.6 percent in 2016.

Regarding the labor market for people aged 15 to 64, things are somewhat different.

Unemployment has been steadily declining in Germany since the early 2000s.

Native German unemployment in 2005 was at 9.8 percent while non-natives were at a 17.9 percent. By contrast, these numbers came down to 3.4 and 7.1 percent respectively.

The numbers regarding income, however, have also remained very steady. The so-called "working poor" are a share of workers across many professions, and the percentage their group occupies has remained stagnant since 2005 as well, for both non-native and native Germans.

Native Germans at risk of poverty were about 6 percent of the working population in 2005 and rose slightly to 6.2 percent in 2016, while those of immigrant backgrounds were at 13.8 percent and decreased by 2 decimal points by last year.

There's an area of improvement as well.

The proportion of both native Germans and those of an immigrant background of 25-to under-35-year-olds with a university degree has all but equalized in the country.

About 17 percent of native Germans of that age group held university degrees in 2005, with people of an immigrant background lagging behind at 13.9 percent. Their share of university degree holders, however, has increased substantially since 2015.

By 2016, however, both native Germans and non-natives held degrees at an equal 26.1 percent.

Germany has seen a massive influx of people of African and Middle Eastern decent over the past two years. Exact numbers are not known, since hundreds of thousands of those who arrived since 2015 have gone off the grid, but it is estimated that nearly 2 million people got in.

A total of 18.6 million people with foreign roots live in Germany. A lot of them are of Turkish decent, descendants of guest workers who decided to stay in Germany after they were invited in the 1950s and 1960s.

Nearly a quarter of the country, 22.5 percent, are reported to have an "immigrant background" according to Destatis.

Many have raised concerns that Germany will never be able to integrate all of these people, who are also changing the nation's face.

The German chancellor, Angela Merkel, despite her decision to de-facto open Europe's borders in 2015, had in 2010 proclaimed that multiculturalism has "utterly failed."

Her words seem to be becoming more and more relevant each day, as problems connected to mass immigration continue to arise. From domestic abuse to violent crimes, from homicides to terrorism, Europe has seen a surge of criminality, on which Eurosceptic and anti-mass immigration parties like the Alternative for Germany have capitalized upon.

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